The World of International Organizations

WHO raises COVID-19 risk to ‘very high’

Civil protection volunteers conduct health checks at Bologna, Italy's international airport on Feb. 6, 2020 (AN/Italian Civil Protection Department)

(AN) — The World Health Organization raised its global risk assessment for the new coronavirus to “very high” from “high” on Friday, as some countries struggled with containment and economic fears lashed global markets.

U.N. issues ‘call to action’ on human rights

The U.N. Human Rights Council chamber in Geneva, with its dome painted by Miquel Barceló, one of Spain’s leading contemporary artists (AN/Eric Bridiers)

(AN) — United Nations leaders challenged nations, businesses and citizens to respond to a “call to action” on Monday for greater efforts around the globe to withstand a rising tide of human rights abuses, violent conflicts and climate change.

U.N. targets nexus of terror and small arms

MONUSCO, the U.N. peacekeeping force in Congo, collects and destroys small arms taken from armed groups in 2015 (AN/Abel Kavanagh)

(AN) — The United Nations’ counterterrorism chief launched a new project on Friday taking on the threat posed by links between terror groups, organized crime and trafficking in illicit small arms that are cheap and easily accessible.

Afghan refugees seek return after 40 years

Afghan Refugees in Islamabad (AN/Hashoo Foundation)

(AN) — Afghan refugees appealed to Pakistan and the United Nations for more support at an international conference that ended on Tuesday, hoping to return home after four decades of forcibly living abroad fleeing wars and conflict.

Treaty talks to save more migratory species

Sandhill cranes and snow geese in sunrise light at Great Sand Dunes National Park in southern Colorado (AN/Patrick Myers)

(AN) — Delegates from 111 nations gathered in western India on Monday for a U.N. conference to protect migratory species and their habitats at a time when human actions are forcing Earth’s natural life support systems to a breaking point.

Munich summit questions ‘Westlessness’

A news conference at the 2020 Munich Security Conference (AN/MSC/Hentschel)

(AN) — Fears of a divided West challenged by China present a challenge and an opportunity for multilateral institutions to show their importance, the world’s diplomats concluded at a three-day summit in Munich that ended on Sunday.

U.N. sees record displacement in Syria war

American mechanized infantry troops in eastern Syria in November (AN/DeAndre Pierce)

(AN) — The Assad regime’s Russia-backed military offensive against the last rebel-held area of northwestern Syria caused the biggest single displacement of the nine-year conflict, U.N. humanitarian officials said on Thursday.

Sudan to hand over al-Bashir for ICC trial

Then-Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir arriving at Juba in 2011 (AN/Al Jazeera English)

(AN) — In a surprise move, Sudan’s transitional government said on Tuesday it will extradite former leader Omar al-Bashir to the International Criminal Court to face trial on charges of genocide and war crimes from the Darfur conflict.

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